Consolidated average unit net cash costs (net of by-product credits) of $1.54 per pound of copper in fourth-quarter 2012 were lower than unit net cash costs of $1.57 per pound in fourth-quarter 2011 reflecting charges in fourth-quarter 2011 associated with new labor agreements and other employee costs, partly offset by higher fourth-quarter 2012 mining costs in North and South America.FCX expects to gain access to higher grade ore at Grasberg in late 2013, which will result in higher copper and gold production volumes. Approximately 29 percent of 2013 consolidated copper sales volumes and 37 percent of consolidated gold sales volumes are expected in fourth-quarter 2013. Quarterly unit net cash costs vary with fluctuations in sales volumes and average realized prices for gold and molybdenum. Assuming average prices of $1,700 per ounce of gold and $11 per pound of molybdenum and achievement of current sales volume and cost estimates, consolidated unit net cash costs (net of by-product credits) for FCX's copper mining operations are expected to average $1.67 per pound of copper in first-quarter 2013 and $1.35 per pound for the year 2013. The impact of price changes on 2013 consolidated unit net cash costs would approximate $0.015 per pound for each $50 per ounce change in the average price of gold and $0.015 per pound for each $2 per pound change in the average price of molybdenum.
Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. Reports Fourth-Quarter And Year Ended December 31, 2012 Results
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